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Comment: Re:I wouldn't sponsor him (Score 2, Interesting) 249

by structengineer (#30326756) Attached to: <em>Gran Turismo</em> Gamer Becomes Pro Race Driver
Nah, I think it's actually opposite. The gamer knows in the back of his mind that the game is just a game . . . when he switches to the real thing he'll tend to be more cautious, due to the "oh $#!7" factor . . . When you're used to driving around a POS and thrashing it, and suddenly get put into someone else's Ferrari, you're going to be extra cautious.
Internet Explorer

New Attack Fells Internet Explorer 202

Posted by Soulskill
from the tricking-an-old-dog dept.
alphadogg writes "Attack code has been identified that could be used to break into a PC running older versions of Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser. The code was posted Friday to the Bugtraq mailing list by an unidentified hacker. According to security vendor Symantec, the code does not always work properly, but it could be used to install unauthorized software on a victim's computer."
Earth

New Research Forecasts Global 6C Increase By End of Century 746

Posted by Soulskill
from the yelling-match-begins-now dept.
jamie writes with this snippet from the UK's Independent: "The world is now firmly on course for the worst-case scenario in terms of climate change, with average global temperatures rising by up to 6C by the end of the century, leading scientists said yesterday. ... [The study] found that there has been a 29 per cent increase in global CO2 emissions from fossil fuel between 2000 and 2008, the last year for which figures are available. On average, the researchers found, there was an annual increase in emissions of just over 3 per cent during the period, compared with an annual increase of 1 per cent between 1990 and 2000. Almost all of the increase this decade occurred after 2000 and resulted from the boom in the Chinese economy. The researchers predict a small decrease this year due to the recession, but further increases from 2010."

Comment: Re:Demonstration very misleading... (Score 1) 388

by structengineer (#30161668) Attached to: Bomb-Proof Wallpaper Developed
Actually, there's a lot of testing for this kind of stuff going on in Civil/Structural Engineering right now. It's true that sometimes the bond between materials is the deciding factor for failure. With some of the newest epoxy and proper treatment of the wall beforehand you can avoid those issues, though. I do note that it says "Kevlar-like" material. I find it odd that that'd use Aramid fibers (what kevlar's made of) in such an application, since they have a moisture absorption problem. Glass Fibers are cheaper, but not as strong. Carbon Fibers would probably be more typical (despite their relatively high cost). The anchors at the top of the wall simulate a roof tie system. In an actual building, there's a lot that's helping hold it together. A live test of a carbon system (with actual explosion!) is here. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2oYm_bNgBLY . No angle iron needed, just proper treatment of the wall and application of the materials. now some of the bond may not be alright after this . . . It may not hold up to multiple blasts. The idea is you take a hit and you get someone out to repair the structure as necessary. The point is this isn't just a gimmick or misleading. There is actual hard core R&D going on in the development of FRP (Fiber-reinforced polymer) materials as a retrofit or new construction material for exactly this purpose, to increase strength in otherwise weak and/or broken structures. (UCSD used to be pretty big in this arena, they have some crazy testing equipment including a blast test simulator).
Image

Bomb-Proof Wallpaper Developed 388 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the radiation-shielding-curtains dept.
MikeChino writes "Working in partnership with the US Army Corp of Engineers, Berry Plastics has rolled out a new breed of bomb-proof wallpaper. Dubbed the X-Flex Blast Protection System, the wallpaper is so effective that a single layer can keep a wrecking ball from smashing through a brick wall, and a double layer can stop blunt objects (i.e. a flying 2×4) from knocking down drywall. According to its designers, covering an entire room takes less than an hour."
Science

Why Doesn't Exercise Lead To Weight Loss? 978

Posted by timothy
from the that-would-be-too-easy dept.
antdude writes "The New York Times' Well blog reports that 'for some time, researchers have been finding that people who exercise don't necessarily lose weight.' A study published online in September 2009 in The British Journal of Sports Medicine was the latest to report apparently disappointing slimming results. In the study, 58 obese people completed 12 weeks of supervised aerobic training without changing their diets. The group lost an average of a little more than seven pounds, and many lost barely half that. How can that be?"
Games

Epic Releases Free Version of Unreal Engine 217

Posted by Soulskill
from the still-waiting-on-the-one-must-fall-engine dept.
anomnomnomymous writes "Just a week after Unity announced its engine is now available for free to indie users, Epic Games has revealed a free version of its popular Unreal Engine technology. Called the Unreal Development Kit (UDK), it is a free edition of UE3 that allows community, modder and indie users more access to the engine's features and is available for all. Epic said game developers, students, hobbyists, researchers, creators of 3D visualizations and simulations plus digital filmmakers can all take advantage of the UDK for non-commercial use. The UDK site also offers detailed product features, technical documentation, commercial licensing terms and support resources."
Space

LaserMotive Finds Success In Space Elevator Competition 258

Posted by Soulskill
from the i'll-still-take-the-stairs-for-now dept.
Bucc5062 writes "LaserMotive has achieved the first step towards the creation of a working space elevator by qualifying for the $900,000 prize in a contest sponsored by NASA. To achieve this first level, LaserMotive needed to propel a platform up a cable dangling from a helicopter at over 2 m/s. They hit a top speed of 4.13 m/s. The next level of qualification will be to achieve a climb speed greater then 5 m/s. LaserMotive beamed roughly 400 watts of laser power to a moving target at a distance of 1 kilometer, as part of the vertical laser alignment procedure. The target was a retro-reflective board a little larger than 1 meter on a side. The contest will continue for another two days with at least two other teams challenging for the prize. To win the Power Beaming competition, the LaserMotive system uses a high-power laser array to shine ultra-intense infrared light onto high-efficiency solar cells, converting the light into electric power which then drives a motor. 'Our system will track the vehicle as it climbs, compensating for motion due to wind and other changes. Building on our experience from last year’s competition, we are designing an improved system able to capture the full $2,000,000 prize.'"
Image

Woman Calls 911 To Report Herself As Drunk Driver 9 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the right-thing-to-do dept.
49-year-old Mary Strey feels strongly about keeping drunk drivers off the road, so strongly in fact that she recently called 911 to report herself as one. The dispatcher told Mary to pull over, turn on her flashers and wait for the police. When officers arrived they gave her a field sobriety test which she failed. Mrs. Strey was arrested and was found to have a blood alcohol level of 0.17.
Transportation

What Happened To the Bay Bridge? 407

Posted by kdawson
from the span-in-the-works dept.
farnsworth writes "Tony Alfrey has put together a fascinating page with some history, analysis, and possible explanations for what ultimately went wrong with the recent emergency repair of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. The bridge has been closed for days and is not scheduled to open for days to come, hugely inconveniencing more than 250,000 people a day. His analysis touches on possibly poor welding, a possibly flawed temporary fix, and the absence of a long-term fix or adequate follow-up by Caltrans, the agency responsible for the bridge. Slashdot is a great engineering community; what other insights do you have on the bridge situation?"
Idle

+ - "Dead" Facebook User Gets Better->

Submitted by Two9A
Two9A (866100) writes "With the recent introduction of memorial accounts on Facebook, the potential arises for hilarity and abuse. Simon Thulbourn's Facebook page has been marked as "in memorial", on the word of a report submitted by one of his friends; unfortunately, the closest the report gets to Simon is that the funeral service in question was officiated by "Revd Simon Thorburn", which seems to be enough for Facebook to mark an unrelated user's profile as dead. Questions have previously been raised about the standard of proof required by Facebook for this service; it seems that those questions were pertinent, if the lax attention paid to these reports by Facebook staff continues."
Link to Original Source
Intel

+ - ARM vs. Atom: Battle for the Next Digital Frontier->

Submitted by
snydeq
snydeq writes "InfoWorld's Neil McAllister examines how the ongoing rise of netbooks, decline of desktops, and the smartphone explosion are reconfiguring the processor market, putting Intel's Atom processor on a clear collision course with ARM. And here, on the low end of computing, Intel may have finally met its match. Thanks to a unique licensing model, ARM will ship an estimated 90 chips per second this year, and the catalog of OSes and apps available for ARM has been growing for decades, including several complete Linux distributions such as Google's Android OS and Chrome OS when it ships. 'One thing ARM doesn't have, however, is Windows,' McAllister writes, something that could ultimately stymie ARM's plans to compete on the low end of the netbook market. And yet Intel's bet on Windows and its x86 compatibility appeal among developers could backfire, McAllister writes. In the end, it's all about performance. Thus far, Intel has yet to demonstrate a model with power characteristics comparable to those of the current generation of ARM chips, which are fast proving their ability to handle high-performance applications."
Link to Original Source

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